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wonderings

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Nov 19, 2021
670
562
My mom has a 2017 MacBook Pro 13", non Touch Bar computer. She called me this morning with an issue. When she hits the power button the screen lights up a bit (assuming just the backlight, screen is still black) and shows the battery symbol at 100%, but it does not actually boot up into MacOS. Any suggestions on what to do here? Computer would be running Big Sur, not sure what update level.
 

wonderings

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Nov 19, 2021
670
562
Ok update to this issue. I went over to my parents place to try and figure this out. When I got here the laptop had a folder with a question mark. I shut down the computer and was going to restart with cmd R to select the boot up disk. Problem is now it does not do anything, just a black screen, no cycling up. I have tried holding the power button for 10 - 15 seconds with nothing. Tried tapping the power, nothing. Double pressing, nothing. Tried with power plugged in, nothing. Tried with power not plugged in and nothing. I am at a loss here to how to proceed. I can't do anything like selecting a boot up trade, resetting SMC or anything else if the machine does not power up. At one point it did flash and show the battery at 100%, but that is it.
 

real_mon2

macrumors member
Mar 11, 2023
49
8
Windsor, Ontario, Canada
Flashing folder symbol = the SSD is not being detected.

Is the power adapter a known good power source? Can you toggle the caps key LED after attempting to turn on the unit? 2017 was impacted by flex gate so if the LED toggles, then the display cable may have become defective and is unable to show the video.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Penryn
Feb 20, 2009
28,454
12,572
Post above may be onto something regarding "FlexGate".

Also...
The flashing question mark goes way back into Mac history -- it means the Mac can't find a startup disk from which to boot. This -might- indicate a failed drive, or then again, something else.

Something to try:
INTERNET recovery (this is NOT THE SAME as "the recovery partition").
Command-OPTION-R
at boot.

You'll need their wifi password.
The utilities take a while to load, be patient "as the globe spins".

Can you get the utilities to load?

If so, open disk utility and check if the internal hard drive can be "seen".
You need to go to the "view" menu and choose "show all devices" to see it.
If you CAN see it, try running "first aid" on it.
 
Last edited:

wonderings

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Nov 19, 2021
670
562
I have had the flashing question mark a long time ago. I did manage to get it booted up by holding shift and the power button. I have an aftermarket OWC SSD installed. It has worked flawlessly till this issue popped up, so a little over a year now. I have backups so I am going to keep an eye on it and see if it starts happening again.
 
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